The annual conference of the Institute of Inspectors of Stock of New South Wales was held In Sydney recently. In the course of a general discussion on cattle diseases, Mr. F. H, Whyte (Wagga) said that in his district a pest known as skeleton weed had caused considerable trouble and anxiety among stock owners. Only last week a farmer had reported that of 700 ewes he had lost fifty. An investigation showed that the paddocks contained nothing new in the way of weeds except skeleton weed.
Mr. Devlin (Casino) said that in his district last year several animals were strangely affected, their skins appearing as though they had been scalded. Singularly enough no dark animals were affected. Mr. Furness (Bathurst) confirmed Mr. Devlins' statements. Of 1,200 cattle owned by one man (he said) 300 were affected, and these animals were all similar In color. It also appeared that the only stock affected was that having access to the richest parts of the flooded areas after heavy rainfalls. The skins of the affected cattle were broken and cracked and a greenish substance oozed from the wounds. Many bullocks had to be destroyed.
The conference decided to ask the Chief Veterinary Officer to arrange for Glenfield to wire the stock inspector direct, when requested. If an urgent diagnosis of disease were required of specimens sent to Glenfield. It also decided to draw the attention of the Minister for Agriculture to the urgent need of a pig branding act. In the event of the abolition of the P. P. Boards, the Minister will be asked by the institute to appoint a stock inspector with the necessary experience in charge of the reserve improvement.
The Minister for Public Health is to be asked to call two stock inspectors to give evidence at any inquiry into the meat (industry and the supply of country meat.)